Flowood eatery's owner pleads guilty to immigration charges

August 28, 2009

Two corporations, the owner, and two managers of Stix Restaurant in Flowood today pleaded guilty to federal immigration laws related to the employment of illegal immigrants, the U.S. attorney’s office announced today. The defendants also forfeited more than $500,000.

The restaurant has been closed since Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents raided it in early 2008, arresting nine illegal immigrants.

Mt. Fuji Restaurant doing business as Stix Restaurant, a Mississippi corporation, and Flowood Partners, an Alabama corporation, pleaded guilty to conspiring to harbor illegal immigrants, according to a news release. The businesses agreed to serve a term of probation of two years and forfeit $418,171.47.

Restaurant owner Gin Hsing Chen, also known as David Chen, pleaded guilty to hiring and continuing to employ illegal immigrants. He agreed to serve a year in prison and forfeit $100,000.

Restaurant managers Shao Li Chen, also known as Judy Wong, and her husband Karl Kwok Hing Wong pleaded guilty to harboring illegal immigrants. The maximum sentence for each is up to 10 years in prison, three years of probation and up to a $250,000 fine.

The Wongs are the sister and brother-in-law of David Chen.

The defendants allegedly hired illegal immigrants, paid them in cash, and housed and transported them to the restaurant.

The defendants are scheduled to be sentenced on Nov. 19.

http://www.mcherald.com/apps/pbcs.dll/a ... on-charges